Epilepsy and Development Study

Epilepsy in Autism

This study will investigate brain structure and function in autistic people with epilepsy. It aims to improve our understanding of why epilepsy is more common in autistic people and to help to predict which individuals are more likely to develop epilepsy.   

Approximately 20-30% of autistic individuals have or will develop epilepsy. It is a major cause of early death in autism and profoundly impacts a person’s quality of life. This study will compare autistic individuals who do and who do not have epilepsy, to non-autistic individuals with epilepsy. We will investigate whether there are particular characteristics in the brain’s structure or function that are specific to the combination of autism and epilepsy. We also aim to identify markers that can predict which autistic individuals may develop epilepsy over the course of their life.

This is the second of two LEAP studies on development in autism. Find out about the first study here.

Name: Leap Epilepsy Study

Lead organisation: King’s College London (KCL)

Lead: Dr Jonathan O’Muircheartaigh

Principle Investigators: Prof Mark Richardson, Dr Jonathan O’Muircheartaigh, Prof Declan Murphy and Prof Oliver Howes.

Research Centres: King’s College London, Radboud University, Karolinska Institute